Friday, 24 October 2008

Egypt - Part 3

Three Days on the Felucca. By the time we had gotten to Aswan we were quite ready to relax a bit as Cairo was a continuous press of people, dirt and heat. We had seen a few photos of the boat we were to be spending the next 3 nights on so it was not a massive surprise when we got there but it was pleasant.

The Nile Breeze
The Nile Breeze is a 12m Felucca with births for 12 people however I think our 10 people was about the perfect number. The deck area was also where we slept and as such was covered in mattresses and on this we spent most of our days. As part of the Nile Breeze package it comes with a support boat that followed along out of sight for most of the journey up until the point when we were to be served up with our meals. It would then pull up next to us and we would jump on board for proper Egyptian cuisine. Stacks of really fresh food all really well prepared.

Our first stop on the our journey was the temple of the Crocodile God (Sobek) at Kom Ombo. As far as temples go, and as an introduction to the many temples along the Nile, this one was pretty awesome.

This was the first day that we really felt the heat and coming from 16C and going to 42-45C is something of a shock to the system. We were told to go through around 3 1.5ltr bottles of water or else we'd be risking heat stroke and once we moved away from the Nile the temperature raises very quickly. The temple is from around 180-145BC and as we were to discover it's quite a young temple.

As far as ways to see Egypt goes a felucca is possibly the best way. It gives you the opportunity to take a break from the constant onslaught of the locals trying to sell you something. I have nothing against them doing this as I understand that tourism is the main way that they are able to make some money and I would not for a moment begrudge them this however having the opportunity to sit back and watch the country go by at a leisurely pace is worth every bit you pay.

The days were pretty perfect and involved breakfast followed by a short sail to our next destination. We would then visit a temple or a village in the morning when the heat wasn't quite as intense and then spend the afternoon chilling out on the boat playing cards or sunbathing. The sun in Egypt, whilst intensely hot, is not like the sun either back home in NZ or here in the UK where you burn fairly quickly.

Speaking of the sun - sunrises and sunsets were spectacular.



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